The Oakland Raiders will reportedly be suspending Antonio Brown after the star receiver’s latest outburst, and some NFL experts expect his era in Oakland will be over before it’s even begun.
On Thursday, reports indicated that Brown got into a near-violent confrontation with team general manager Mike Mayock. As Vic Tafur of The Athletic reported on Twitter, Brown needed to be held back by teammates during the heated argument with Mayock. The argument reportedly included Brown threatening to punch the general manager, punting a football, and daring the team to fine him. The team will be suspending Brown for the incident, reports indicated.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reported on Twitter that the Raiders may now be trying to void the $30.125 million of guaranteed money in Brown’s contract, which would end his time with the team and send him to free agency (The Inquisitr has a look at his potential landing spots).
There had already been growing signs of tension between Brown and the Raiders, starting with his holdout over no longer being able to play with his preferred helmet. Earlier this week, Brown also revealed that the team had hit him with two major fines in the last three weeks, posting online the letter from Mayock detailing the fines.
As CBS Sports reported, the team fined Brown $40,000 for missing a “preseason training camp” practice and hit him with another $13,950 fine for not participating in a team walk-through on August 22. In posting the letter, Brown seemed to call out the Raiders, saying “when your own team want to hate” and promising that “everyone got to pay this year.”
— ESPN (@espn) September 5, 2019
— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) September 4, 2019
Even though the Raiders gave Brown a $50 million contract after trading for him last year, others have speculated that the Raiders may be looking to trade Brown. As Spotrac noted on Twitter, it doesn’t appear that cutting Antonio Brown outright would be much of an option for the Raiders. Doing so would leave them with $30.125 million in dead cap space. However, if the team managed to trade Brown, it would just be a $1 million dead cap hit.
Moving on from Antonio Brown
Trade#Raiders take on $1M of dead cap ($333k in 2019, $667k in 2020).
New team acquires cash/cap hits of $14.6M/$17M/$17.5M
Release#Raiders take on $30.125M of dead cap ($29.45M in 2019, $667k in 2020)
— Spotrac (@spotrac) September 5, 2019
When do the Raiders say "screw this" and trade Antonio Brown to Buffalo?
— Cameron DaSilva (@camdasilva) September 5, 2019
It’s also unclear just what value Brown would have on the trade market. The Raiders sent third- and fifth-round picks to the Pittsburgh Steelers in order to land Brown, but the team would likely have to accept significantly less in letting him go, as any team taking him on would inherit the headaches he has caused in the past several months.
The reports did not yet say how long Antonio Brown could be suspended or whether the team has started the formal steps to void his guaranteed money and send him to free agency.